Each year, millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental health condition. Yet, many communities face a lack of access to resources, cultural stigma and lower quality care. All too often, minorities face their condition in silence.
Minorities are less likely to receive diagnosis and treatment for their mental illness. They have less access to and availability of mental health services. Often, they receive a poorer quality of mental health care. Right now, during National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month, we can stand with these communities and show them that they are not alone and that there is help.
Research shows that stigma toward mental illness is especially high in minority communities. Individuals may find it difficult to talk about their concerns with family members and peers, which discourages them from seeking treatment.
Only 25% of African Americans and 10% of Latinos will seek treatment for a mental health issue, compared to 40% of white individuals. The reasons for this drop-off may include misdiagnosis by doctors, socioeconomic factors, stigma, lack of health insurance, language barriers or fear of law enforcement involvement.
Every person with a mental health condition should have access to quality care. Every community should know the importance of mental health, be aware of the signs of mental health conditions and be confident in their access to support. This is a matter of equity.
Mental illness can affect anyone, regardless of culture, gender, sexual orientation, race or ethnicity. You can help ensure that millions of Americans can receive the mental health care they need.
Donate today to provide critical support during #MinorityMentalHealth month.
We can all do our part to provide help and hope to diverse communities. Will you take this opportunity to provide support and advocate for equal access to mental health care?
Mary Giliberti, J.D.
Chief Executive Officer